What about a Pine digital audio player?
My old Sansa Clip finally bit the dust, and in looking for a replacement, it seems there is a dearth of decent, *uncomplicated* audio players on the market, unless you're willing to make some compromises.

Sony still makes awesome DACs, but their Walkman line is now Android-based, whcih is the opposite of what I want. I have plenty of devices to run apps. I just want a compact music player.

There's decent (enough) *hardware*, but the software for all of it sucks. After spending time looking at all my options on Amazon, it's obvious 99% of the market uses one of two firmwares, both of which suffer from some serious limitations that are entirely caused by bad code, not bad hardware.

This Chinese brand (SWOFY) clip MP3 player I picked up has the potential to be a lot better with relatively minor improvements to the firmware. The DAC isn't super great, but it's good enough unless you use big headphones and like bass-heavy music.

Maybe there's less of a market than I'm thinking here, but maybe Pine can consider developing an audio player with open-source firmware. If it's focused on audio-only, there's no need for expensive components like touchscreens and color displays; a monochrome OLED and physical buttons are preferable. Not only does this save money, it means better battery life. A good DAC is really what matters most, along with Bluetooth (as an audio output device) and USB-C (because micro-USB is not a resilient hardware connector and inevitably fails with enough use).

It's also something to consider for anyone who's concerned about tech privacy. A dumb music player can't track your location and phone home with details unique to your person, after all.

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